What is your overall impression of how commissioner-designate Bulc performed?
Mrs Bulc performed better than expected and surprised us with some knowledge of transport issues (positive mention of polluters-pay principle and use-it-or-lose-it principle). She seemed motivated to boost innovation and sustainable development in transport, something no former transport Commissioner is known for. She was open, straight-forward and did not avoid questions.
Were there particular issues or answers that stood out – either in a positive or negative sense?
Violeta Bulc said she was against social dumping, mentioned the social agenda quite often and also combating youth unemployment. But she has no profound knowledge and experience of transport policy, nor any practical knowledge of European policy or institutional work.
However, all her answers on key green issues were unsatisfactory. She was in favour of taking measures in air transport policy, which could lead to less climate impact. She did not see noise nuisance as health-related. She saw large scale projects (Lyon-Turin, Brenner, Danube bottle-neck Straubing-Vilshofen) only in their potential job-creation capacity, while avoiding the environmental, energetic and financial issues they engender. On gigaliners, Mrs. Bulc was content to leave the decision to 'consenting member states'.
Do you think she is suitable for the transport portfolio?
We strongly disagree with the procedure following the hearing of Mr Šefčovič on 30 September. As Ms Bratušek was replaced, following her hearing, Mr Juncker switched portfolios and 'downgraded' the transport dossier, without even taking into account the joint Transport Committee letter from all political groups, requesting to leave Mr Šefčovič in place. In this context, Mrs. Bulc’s nomination is 'passable', for lack of a better alternative.
Out of ten, what marks would you give her hearing performance?